Car enthusiasts across the country make modifications to their cars every day; some are purely cosmetic, whereas others can alter the performance of the vehicle. A car modification involves changing the style of the vehicle so that it no longer matches the original specifications set by the manufacturer. Some modifications are harmless and won’t affect safety when driving, although certain customisations can lead to legal action if they can endanger the driver and other road users.
It is important to note that modifications to cars can affect your insurance policy, so it is vital that you contact your provider should any changes be made – these usually make insurance more expensive due to the added value but could reduce the price if the car is made to be more secure. All modified parts should be purchased from a reputable retailer and carried out by a professional or person with sufficient expertise to ensure safety is maintained. Taking the car for a test drive can be a useful way to test this out before venturing out onto public highways.
Here we discuss some of the most popular modifications that can be carried out on cars, which are legal so long as the appropriate restrictions are adhered to.
Alloy wheels are one of the most popular modifications for cars and one of the easiest to undertake – better yet, they’re perfectly legal. It’s no wonder since they add a touch of elegance to even the most mundane of car models. A cordless impact driver can help to improve the accuracy of attaching alloy wheels, allowing bolts and nuts to be tightened to the correct recommendations by the manufacturer. Installing alloy wheels on your vehicle can enhance the car’s handling due to a reduction in weight compared with standard wheels.However, this is usually met with a hefty price tag due to manufacturing costs and can crack under high impact more easily than steel alloys.
Another popular modification amongst car fanatics is tinted windows, and it’s also legal, should you follow the restrictions set by the law. Typically, no restrictions exist for the rear windows and rear windscreen, however, the front windscreen must allow 75% of light through and the front side windows must let through at least 70% of light. Tinted windows can be a great addition to cars to provide a slicker appearance, like that seen with premium car brands, given they’re affixed to the right windows. They are also great for keeping vehicles cool on the inside and deterring thieves.
Whilst poorly done paint jobs can be a crime against good taste, it is not usually classed as a crime. Generally speaking, you are free to paint the car how you wish, or alternatively,you could opt for vinyl wrap, which looks similar in appearance and can protect the paintwork from scratches and harmful chemicals. Bear in mind, getting a professional to repaint your car can be an expensive process and doing it yourself can be time-consuming – and lead to a poor finish if you lack the desired experience.
Fitting spoilers onto a vehicle is not only a stylish addition, designed to give a sporty look, but it is also useful for improving the handling and performance of a car. Whilst it is not strictly illegal to add spoilers onto cars, there are certain requirements that must be met to ensure it is legal to drive on the road. Firstly, it must be securely fastened to the car, in a position so as not to obstruct the view of the driver. The shape of the spoiler must also not contain any sharp edges that could lead to injury. Do note, that police do reserve the right to remove a spoiler at any point should they deem it to be a danger to others.